Endurance is my word of the year for 2022. Since the beginning of January, I’ve seen endurance throughout the scriptures. Here are some of the things I’m learning.
Endurance produces maturity. “But you must learn to endure everything, so you will be completely mature and not lacking in anything.” (James 1:4, CEV)
Having grown up a notch above the poverty line, I embraced a feeling of lack. Even thought I’ve completed three decades as an adult living a very comfortable financial lifestyle, there is a part of me that still lives in a poverty mindset. My inner talk regularly includes the words, “not enough.” Not enough time. Not enough energy. Not enough money. As a result, I’ve lived much of life with avarice, stingy with my time, energy, and money.
Perhaps part of my path to maturity involves letting go of the poverty mindset and embracing abundance. David says, “Young lions go lacking and hungry, but those who seek the LORD will lack no good thing.” (Psalm 34:10) Paul says, “He who began a good work in you will be faithful to perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 1:6).
As Jesus gives instructions on what the final days will look like before His return, He says that in the end times, “Because lawlessness is increased, the love of most will grow cold.” (Matthew 12:12-13) Then He says, But the one who endures to the end will be saved.”
In Greek the word for saved is “sozo”. It means to “deliver or protect.” It also means to “Heal, preserve, do well, or make whole.” Endurance brings protection.
The fear of lack comes with a fear of failure. There is a part of me that is afraid that my world will collapse like a house of cards. Jesus says that the one who endures will be saved, enjoying protection, deliverance, healing, and wholeness.
My heart’s desire is to leave an impact on my family, friends, colleagues, and the world. Jesus tells the story of the sower and the four types of soil. “The seed that fell into the good, fertile soil represents those lovers of truth who hear it deep within their hearts. They respond by clinging to the word, keeping it dear as they endure all things in faith. This is the seed that will one day bear much fruit in their lives.” (Luke 8:15, TPT).
The seed is the word of God. The seed bears much fruit as I cling to the word’s promises, prophecies, and precepts with endurance. I’m also reminded that Jesus is the Word. Clinging to Him is the source of fruit.
The fruit I want in my life comes with endurance. Peter talks about endurance in his ladder of virtue: “So devote yourselves to lavishly supplementing your faith with goodness, and to goodness add understanding, and to understanding, add the strength of self control, and to self-control add patient endurance.” (I Peter 1:5-6 TPT). He goes on to say, “Since these virtues are already planted deep within, and you possess them in abundant supply, they will keep you from being inactive or fruitless in your pursuit of knowing Jesus Christ more intimately.” (I Peter 1:8 TPT).